Hospitals in at least two counties in Texas are at full capacity because the Lone Star State sees a worrying peak in corona virus cases.
Judges in Starr and Hidalgo counties sounded the alarm on Friday, warning residents that hospitals in the Rio Grande Valley were at capacity.
Judge Eloy Vera of Starr County wrote in a Facebook post that there had been 18 coronavirus-related deaths in the county and that two seriously ill patients flew out of the area for treatment.
“The local hospitals and valley hospitals are at full capacity and have no more beds available. I urge all our residents to please provide on-site protection, wear face coverings, practice social distance and avoid calls,”
Judge Richard Cortez of nearby Hidalgo County issued a similar warning and asked residents to protect themselves on site and wear face coverings to try to cope with the virus’s rapid spread.
“HIDALGO COUNTY HOSPITALS is at capacity,” he tweeted. “Celebrate July 4th in a responsible way, RINSE-IN-PLACE and avoid gatherings of 10+ people. Use face covering and social distance. Protect yourself and your family. “
Stay safe this weekend. pic.twitter.com/DhiH7NEGXJ
– Richard F. Cortez, Hidalgo County Judge (@JudgeCortez) July 3, 2020
The warnings come when Texas sees sharp peaks in coronavirus cases after a first dip. The officials announced nearly 7,000 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, breaking the state record for the total number of confirmed cases in one day.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) issued an executive order Thursday requiring masks to be worn in public spaces in counties with at least 20 coronavirus cases to try to fight the fungal outbreak, though he appeared reluctant to disclose business.
“Wearing a face covering in public has proven to be one of the most effective ways we have to slow the spread of COVID-19,” Abbott said in a statement. “We have the ability to keep companies open and move our economy forward so the Texans can continue to earn a paycheck, but that requires us all to do our part to protect each other – and that means having a face covering in public spaces.”